We are just past the new year and conference play is just getting underway, there are some wild and crazy things going on. This is something I will likely update and continue til the end of the season.
-Arkansas continues to lead the country in 3pt percentage defense. 22.6 is wild and through 14 games who knows if it will continue but Muss Bus has brought a different level of perimeter defense to Fayetteville. It’s helped that through 14 games, they have only faced 2 teams that shoot better than 36 percent.
-No team in the country turns the basketball more on offense than Arkansas Pine Bluff. The Lions turn the ball over on 29 percent of their possessions. It’s one of the reasons they’ve lost 8 games by 15 or more this season and have just 1 D1 win against Miss Valley State, the team I have as the worst in the country.
-Yale is the best ATS team in the country. James Jones and the Bulldogs continue to be terrific on both sides of the ball. They rank 4th in the country in Effective FG % defense and are one of the best 3 pt defenses in the country. They’ve been paced offensively by guard Azar Swain and bigs Paul Atkinson and Jordan Bruner. They to me are the favorite in the Ivy and will win a game or maybe more in March when they get there.
-Last season, West Virginia gave up over 77 points per game. This season just over 60. They have a ton of size and throughout conference play, playing the Mountaineers is going to be complete hell. What’s been so amazing about these numbers, is that they’ve played one of the toughest 20 schedules in America. Things have done a complete 180 in Morgantown. Personnel is important. Huggy Bear has done such a great job of cutting the wrong guys out. It’s paid off.
-South Florida has lost 4 of 6. The continued problem for the Bulls even dating back to last year has been completely odd offense. They basically are dependent on getting to the foul line to create offense. The problem is they are among the worst in the country from the line shooting 60.6 percent. Figures to be another irritating year in Tampa.
-I continue to be bullish on the Peacocks of St Peters. The boys from North Jersey have covered all 6 games this as a dog. In a league where they figure to be a dog a lot in conference you better get to know them. They play great defense and stay in games at the foul line and from 3. My big key to backing an underdog.